Seven Songs.

I have watched with no small amount of trepidation as my Facebook friends played the “7 songs in 7 days” challenge and tagged each other daily. “Don’t tag me, don’t tag me, don’t tag me,” I muttered.

But last night, my friend KK did tag me. I told her that I would try my best.

For as long as I can remember, music has been one of the only things I could really understand. I have issues. ADHD. Low self confidence. Depression. I struggle with social situations, depending on the day. I can’t always pay attention.

I missed a lot of real good conversations
But not for lack of time and place
My mouth participated but inside I was elsewhere
I was transfixed and drooling and lost in their face

-Kris Delmhorst, Janet the Pig

I can tell you exactly where I was, who I was with, that I was smoking, and that it was raining when I heard that song for the first time.

Music was and still is my language, my sanity, my peace. I can tell you the exact situation that led to me curled in a ball and playing Tori Amos’s cover of “Angie” on repeat for two days (stupid Dave). I can tell you the first time I ever heard The Weepies (live, Nashville, opening for The Indigo Girls, with Mandy, Katie, & Elizabeth) and that it was love at first strum. I can tell you pretty much the exact years I was into Snoop Dogg and Method Man and why (2000-2001, a boy, of course).

I can sing all of the melodies, harmonies, bgvs, guitar parts, and penny whistle parts from most of the Indigo Girls’ albums. I get choked with emotion when I listen to the Sublime album “40oz. to freedom.” I dance the same way every time I hear “Cold Beverage” by G. Love and Special Sauce (like an idiot). I haven’t broken or thrown anything in a rage in many years, thanks to the band Hole.

Is my favorite song the one that made me realize my friend Anthony really was dying? The one I found completely accidentally and listened to on repeat the week after his funeral? Is it one of my best friend’s songs, that I know by heart after singing for decades? Is it a Tom Petty song? Paul Simon? Is it the song I listen to when I’m elated or the song I listen to when I’m in the gutter? The song that I play before I sit down to write?

I have always said that songs are like children to me. I love them all the same but differently, and I can’t pick a favorite. I’m about to pick seven, for fun on Facebook. I’ll keep you posted.